WHEREVER I MAY ROAM
CHAPTER 3 - SO LIMITLESS AND FREE
Just... like... that.
I staggered backwards a little under James' weight, clutching him as close to me as I could without it seeming suspicious. The feeling of having him in my arms was absolutely overwhelming, his slender, yet somehow not bony frame fitting against me perfectly, the most delicate, beautiful scent imaginable wafting into my nostrils. It wasn't cologne, I could tell that much, I guess it was just... him.
Brain to Robinson... put him down before he starts thinking you're a flaming queer!
I let him go reluctantly, scared that he might have already figured me out... my T-shirt wasn't tucked in and was covering the front of my pants, but... Yeah, so I popped a woody. So would you if you had this guy in your arms! Thankfully though, he didn't appear to have noticed a thing.
"So, why the tank? I mean, I can understand wanting to get away from Mark, but why come here to do it?"
"Well, I just... er... " He just dried up, as if he was afraid of offending me or something.
"You... er?" Oh, go on, say you wanted to be with me. You know you want to!
"I... wanted someone I knew to talk to." Oh well. Better than nothing.
"Cool," I said, flashing him a quick smile, which seemed to help him relax a little.
"What you in for?"
"Oh, just some cheap joke I made at Dudley's expense. Bitch sent me to the principal."
"What did you say?"
"Oh, it was nothing."
But he insisted, and when I actually told him, I dunno, he just cracked up. I didn't think it was even that funny, but he did somehow. Well, who cares why he thought it was so great, I got to see him smile again! And his laugh was something else. I'm not gonna say musical or any crap like that, it was just nice to listen to. Fuck, I love everything about this guy and I've known him for what... about 7 hours! I need to control myself real quick or I'm just gonna say something stupid and give the game away completely. But hell, I have to find out more about him SOMEHOW.
"So, James... uh, why did you move up?"
"Why, you think I shouldn't have?" Ouch!
"No, that's not what I was saying, just... I dunno, not that many people come here just for school or a job. There's not that much here really."
"Well... " OK, now that one just cooled the atmosphere right down. Nice one, Chris!
"S'ok James man, you don't have to tell me if you don't want to."
"Thanks Chris." A little brighter now at least, but when he looked up, I could see a tear brimming in the corner of each of those sexy, soulful eyes. There's something buried there, something that runs deeper than I could maybe understand, and it's obviously left him in a tremendous amount of pain. Well, I don't wanna open that can of worms now, but I hope he can bring himself to get it out one day, I hate seeing so much pain on that face.
"Anytime you wanna tell me anything though, I'll listen, ok?" Again, that intense gaze, almost scrutinising my face for any hint of insincerity or double motive.
"Uh, thanks Chris. Yeah, thanks." Oh shit! What do I say?
"So, what do you think of this place so far?" Oh lord, what a brilliant line!
"The school or the town?"
"The town is cool enough, what I've seen of it, but it's kinda... I dunno, small. The school, I guess has its good parts, but some pretty bad ones too."
"Yeah, a definite downer there. And... "
"Yeah, Mark. Another definite downer. I think that asshole is the very definition of the word downer. But just don't let him get you down and tell me if he does. I'll take care of him." Oh, shit, this macho crap is really going to get me into so much trouble!
"You told me before," he said, finally cracking a little smile.
"Well, I know, but I just want you to know I mean it. Nobody fucks with my friends. Even if I have only known them for only 7 hours," I said, laying my hand on his shoulder.
"It feels like a lot longer, though," he said, looking into my eyes. And he was right, it did. I even felt pretty comfortable around him, and I NEVER feel comfortable around people that I'm interested in.
"Yeah, it does... I like that."
"Yep, it's cool. Uh, Chris... "
"What are we actually going to do at your house?"
"I dunno... whatever you want, really. We got a pool table, Playstation, N64, or we could just sit in my room and listen to the CDs I got. Or, we could pick up a few girls and have an orgy on my parents' bed if you'd like."
"Huh? Oh... " That wonderful laugh again, and this time I joined in with him. It was just one of those infectious laughs, you know, where there's not really a reason, but you do it anyway? Well, it was like that, and we just couldn't stop for like a minute and a half, every time we even looked at each other, it burst out again, stronger than before, until eventually we were just so out of breath we couldn't laugh any more.
"You not into the whole orgy thing then?"
He averted his face so cutely before replying so softly I could hardly hear him, "Not exactly... "
"No? You sure?"
"Yeah, just you and me is fine." Now did he mean what I thought he meant? No, of course not, but wouldn't it be the greatest thing in the world?
"Cool. Well, we only got... about another 10 minutes before Gallagher comes to let us out."
"Doesn't it annoy you being locked up by your own homeroom teacher?"
"Not really. It sure annoys me that I get detention in the first place, though."
"Well, couldn't you use your phone and order pizza?"
"Hmm, gotta try that tomorrow. I dunno though. I mean, where would they leave it?"
"Well, they could put it through the window I came in."
"Still not sure it'd work, but it's worth a try, I guess." This kid has the cutest ideas, as well as being the cutest and sexiest guy I've ever met. "We could get pizza anyway. Or is your mom gonna be cooking for you?"
"No, pizza would be cool."
"Hmm, then I guess it's gotta be Chinese tomorrow. I don't want pizza two days in a row really."
"So can I come down again? I love Chinese!" Wow... keen or what? Well, he can suck on my noodle any time he likes.
"Cool. I think I should make it into a tradition, you know, get food delivered every detention."
"Me and my... friend did that once," he said, reflectively, sadly. As much as I think he's wonderful, this whole emotional roller-coaster thing could get a little wearing. He seems to be up and down more often than some of Luke's ex's thongs. And THAT's serious. Still, only a few more minutes now and we can get out of here and... get pizza. Yeah.
"Hey, James man, it's ok... don't be sad about it. Everyone's gotta move on."
"I know, but... it was my mom. She just said 'we're moving' one day and I was just cut off from everything." Like what? He leave a girlfriend behind or something? Again those memories, whatever they were surfaced and he seemed to be fighting back tears. Shit, I'm so crap at this.
"Tell me what's wrong, man. I ain't gonna go telling it to everyone."
"I've never told anyone."
"So start, man... Just spill. Like I said, there's no one else here and I'll never tell."
"I... left someone behind when we moved. My mom... didn't approve."
"What about your dad?"
"Walked out, ran away, left. Whatever. I haven't seen him in 4 years."
"And your mom didn't approve cause... ?"
"She doesn't understand me." Oh, now where does that sound familiar from? Just about every time I ever came home with a letter from school about me disrupting classes, breaking bounds, smoking, talking back to teachers, getting into fights, and all that fun stuff!
"I don't think anyone's parents understand them James. No one's."
"Yeah, whatever. Didn't think you'd understand."
I was about to reply when I heard Gallagher's footfall on the stairs. "Shit, man, hide. You shouldn't be here!" James jumped up, flattening himself along the wall on which the door was situated, just as Gallagher opened the door.
"Have a good time, Robinson?"
"Something like that."
"When I want. It's not like I don't know my way out from here, is it?"
"Too true, Mr Robinson. If only you could exercise courtesy when addressing members of the staff here, our lives would be much easier, don't you think?" Oh great! The discipline and respect lecture! If I had a nickel for every time I'd heard this...
"Like talking to a wall, isn't it, Robinson? I talk, but it bounces straight off."
"Could I please have your attention for just one second?"
"Yes sir." What does this guy want? Let me go already!
"Don't make that new kid into a little clone of you. Please. Just for me."
"Two me's, sir? What a cool idea." He shuddered visibly before turning around and walking back up the stairs and presumably out to his car and home.
"Goodnight, Mr Robinson. See you in homeroom tomorrow," he said before stalking away up the stairs.
"Ya hear that, James man? I'm gonna make you into a 'little clone of me.'"
"No shit! Not until he's taught you for a year do you appreciate how weird the man is, though. Sometimes he can be cool and other times, just freaky. I guess that's what being a teacher here does to you."
"I guess. Anyway, we going?"
"You bet! Not hanging around here any longer than I have to. C'mon." I slung my bag over my shoulder and walked up the stairs, James close behind.
"How far is it, Chris?"
"Not too bad. 137 McClelland. About 7 or 8 minutes from here."
We walked out of the school gates and walked in silence, mostly, just enjoying the early September sun. My hand went to one of the pockets of my bag and my Marlboro Lights. I shook one out and lit up, almost putting them away before remembering to offer one to James who declined politely.
"Didn't know you smoked."
"I don't really. Just one or two after school and sometimes at parties."
"I won't if it bothers you... "
"No, it's ok."
"Thanks man," I said, taking a long drag. Ok, I suppose I shouldn't smoke if I ever want to play pro basketball, but hey, you're only young once, at least that's what I think. My parents, teachers, and coach seem to take a different view, but then that's their job, isn't it?
I finished my smoke just as we were turning into my street and it wasn't long before we were walking up the path to my front door. I opened the door, shutting it behind us and kicking off my sneakers and throwing my school bag down, signalling to James that he should do the same. I grabbed the Sam Goody bag with my CDs out of the bag, leaving my schoolwork just where it belongs, just inside the door, not touched.
"So, what ya wanna do?"
"Uh, I dunno... "
"Well, we can order pizza and just hang out in my room for a bit... if that's ok with you, that is."
"That's fine, yeah."
I grabbed the cordless on the way down to my room. At the top of the stairs, James turned to me and said, "You live in the basement?"
"Yeah, sure. I got my own suite down there... bedroom, bathroom, shower, bathtub. It's cool."
"Yeah, I bet. My room's not exactly massive." We walked down the stairs and if he was impressed before, he was amazed now. His jaw practically hit the floor and a little gasp escaped his lips. Just a shame that it was my room and not me that made him gasp...
"You get used to it and it gets old real quick," I said offhandedly, taking the CDs I bought out of the bag and putting the Metallica one in my player.
"I love this song," James said as Enter Sandman filled the room.
"Yeah, it's cool. I've had this on tape for ages, but I figured it was about time I got the real album."
I picked up my guitar, plugged in and began to play along, as best I could anyway. I'm no James Hetfield, much less Kirk Hammett, but I can play the basic bits at least.
"That's cool, Chris."
"Ah, I'm not that good."
"Well, you've got that down pretty well," he said, and I couldn't control my blushes.
"You play, right?"
"Yeah, a bit. A lot more blues and stuff, but yeah, I know a load of other stuff too." I laid the guitar down and turned off my amp, turning the stereo down and sitting beside him. "You mind if I...?" he said, indicating my Les Paul.
"Course not, knock yourself out," I replied, flicking the amp back on and handing him the guitar. I turned the stereo off as well, giving him a chance to play what he wanted.
Now it was my turn to gasp in surprise. He sure wasn't the sort of person you'd expect to be a guitar genius, but he was. From Metallica and Pantera to Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan, it all flowed from his fingertips quickly and naturally. I don't know how long his little recital lasted, but there wasn't more than a minute that went by when I wasn't thinking "shit, how does he do that" or "wish I could play that". It wasn't even like he was showing off. If anything, he seemed really self-conscious of performing and that impressed me even more. I really can't stand people who show off and stand there waiting for applause.
And sure enough, James didn't. He just set the guitar down, and looked up at me, smiling gently at me, not one of those "look at me, I'm great" smiles, but a "thanks for hearing me out" smile.
"Thanks. You're really good, you know that?"
"You sing too, or you just play?"
"Just play mostly. I try to sing."
"Go on then... "
"I dunno, I'm not sure... "
"Oh go on. Just one song."
"Ok, I guess." He picked up the guitar and again, turning the amplifier right down and onto a clean tone, picking out the opening riff of Alice In Chains' 'Down In A Hole'. I sat entranced as he continued, his voice soft but still easily audible, soaring over a haunting guitar line.
The silence that descended after he was done was so complete it scared me and I just couldn't speak. I didn't trust myself to do anything but sit there and look amazed. Which I did.
"Nothing, that was just... really... " Words failed me, something that admittedly does not happen often.
"Did I do something wrong?" He looked so worried he'd offended me or something that I couldn't tell him otherwise quick enough.
"No, it was really cool, I just... I dunno, it was amazing. I always loved that song."
"Me too. It's kinda sad but... beautiful too."
"So's your voice."
"Beautiful. But sad too." I'm not totally convinced I should have said that!
He blushed an absolutely beautiful shade of red, yet he couldn't suppress a little smile that let me know he appreciated it.
"Thanks, Chris. I'm glad you liked it."
"You think you could show me how to play that sometime?"
"Sure. Now if you like."
"Cool." He handed me the guitar and tried to tell me verbally how to play the song, but that wasn't working, so he tried to guide my fingers with his, but that wasn't working either. Not least because it meant he was brushing up against me all the time and the soft skin of his fingers was constantly against me. I'm sure the guitar was a few inches further away from my body than it should have been, meaning that it was now my turn to blush, which I'm absolutely sure he picked up on. I'm sure I saw his eyes flick down, but then again, that could just have been wishful thinking.
Finally, I managed to get my fingers round the first verse and chorus, which earned an approving little grin from James.
"Cool... you pick stuff up really quickly."
"Yeah, well I found it hard at first, but you're a pretty cool teacher. Thanks, man." On the mention of the word hard, again, I'm sure that his eyes flicked down, almost as if to check if my woody was still there. Thankfully, it had receded to unnoticeable levels a few minutes ago, but I was still totally jacked, intoxicated by his presence so close to me.
"We gonna get that pizza then?"
"Yeah, why not? What ya want on it?"
"I'm cool with whatever you want... "
"Hmm, well we can go upstairs and check what they do, cause there's a flyer or something in the kitchen. Mom always leaves me some cash for pizza or something."
"Cool." We went upstairs, James helping me root around for the pizza flyer. We ended up agreeing on plain peperoni, boring maybe, but when you're 15 it's a staple food!
"Aw shit... left the phone downstairs!"
"Don't worry, I'll get it." He ran off downstairs, treating me to another wonderful view of that sexy ass. I flopped down on to a chair, trying to clear my head of visions of James, not especially wanting to, more needing to in order to stop myself just grabbing him and blowing my cover.
I was trying to think about exactly what it was that I felt for him, but I just couldn't get my head around it, how much I just wanted to hold him, kiss him, have him close to me. It wasn't just a physical thing, not any more at least. It might have started out like that, but I'd fallen in love with his personality. The way he thought, the way he expressed his thoughts, how sweet and sincere and modest he was. Even if he did seem to be on a bit of an emotional roller-coaster quite a bit of the time. I didn't care. And you don't, do you? You don't think about that when you're in love. Ok, it might be self delusion, but I honestly believed I was. And I was scared. Very scared because I'd never felt this way about anyone before. Not Martina, not anyone.
Let's just say I wanted to be with him. Badly.
I snapped out of my little reverie to realise that I'd been sitting there for about ten minutes just thinking, and he hadn't come back up. I picked myself up and walked down to my room, not quite knowing what to expect.
He was just sitting there with my guitar, not even playing it, just sitting there and thinking, almost like I had been.
"Hey James man, you gonna let me have that phone? If you want the pizza, that is."
"Sure." He handed me the phone and I ordered quickly, sitting down beside James on the bed.
"About 35 minutes, ok?"
"James, you ok?"
"You wanna play Playstation while we wait for the pizza?"
"Sure, I guess."
"Cool." I plugged it all in, handing him a controller. "What ya wanna play?"
"What've you got?"
"Er... here, Tekken 3, Gran Turismo 2, uh, a couple of basketball ones, Fifa Soccer 2000. I guess that's about it."
"You like soccer?"
"Yeah, it's cool. You wanna play?"
"If you think you can handle it," he said with a little smile. Ooh, competitive, huh? Well I'll show him a thing or two!
Or then again maybe I won't. 3-0 down at half time and it's not looking like getting any better. I looked over him and saw him flash me a cheeky little smile. Right, that does it. No one beats me like that. I pulled it back to 3-2 shortly after half time, but suddenly one of his players was through on goal, and it took a desperation foul to stop a certain goal. Penalty... which of course he scored. Ok, this calls for desperate measures. I grabbed him round the waist and threw him onto his back on the bed, pinning him down. Ok, nice wrestling move, but considering that I thought he was the hottest thing on two legs, it probably wasn't such a good idea generally, as I felt my hardon flourish again. His leg brushed up against it and the second he felt that he stopped his playful struggles.
"Uh, what's this?" OH SHIT!
"Well, what do you think it is?" Oh, nice one, asshole!
"Well, I think you've got a hardon cause you were wrestling with me," he said, oh so softly.
"So you like me?" Chris - for one million dollars... and no lifelines. Shit, I could only just bring myself to meet his gaze.
"And if I felt the same way about you?"
As Axl Rose once said, Oh My God!
Copyright Hayabusa 2001
Welcome to the triumphant return of the Hayabusa. Or I finally finished the 3rd bit. I know, I know, about time, right? I'm not gonna make excuses about it, I'm just going to say it was very difficult to get the same frame of mind I had when I wrote 1 and 2. I hope it's not a disappointment to anyone. And if it is, sorry.
No promises on 4 yet, I'm afraid. As you might have guessed, my creative process is a little fragile to say the very least!
Once again, thanks to everyone who helps me with this, namely Chris G for editing it and everyone that read the first two and wrote to me. You guy have no idea how much that meant, you really don't. And to everyone who doesn't help me and holds me back, me and my demons are coming to get you :) All you false people cannot hide forever.
Thanks also to Fozzy and Börät for being the sickest pair of people I know. I guess that's why we all get on so well :) Thanks for all the support guys.
As always feedback is much appreciated @ firstname.lastname@example.org. And it'll soon be posted at http://hayabusa2001.tripod.com/ too. Enjoy.